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Were early seas transformed by sponge microbiome?

If ever there was proof of the power of small things, surely this is it. Last year, came the suggestion that sponges transformed Earth's deep oceans 750 million years ago, turning them into an oxygen-rich haven for life. Now it seems tiny bacteria living inside the sponges also played a part in ... Read More

Small Loop in Human Prion Protein Prevents Chronic Wasting Disease

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) — an infectious disease caused by prions — affects North American elk and deer, but has not been observed in humans. Using a mouse model that expresses an altered form of the normal human prion protein, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Me... Read More

Microbe helps switchgrass 'detox' polluted soil.

Switchgrass successfully removed up to 40 percent of the PCBs from contaminated soils in lab experiments. When a PCB-oxidizing microorganism joined in, the removal rate reached 47 percent.

The researchers investigated how adding an aerobic PCB-oxidizing microorganism could enhance the oxidati... Read More

Mutant bacteria that keep on growing

The typical Escherichia coli, the laboratory rat of microbiology, is a tiny 1-2 thousandths of a millimeter long. Now, by blocking cell division, two researchers at Concordia University in Montreal have grown E. coli that stretch three quarters of a millimeter. That's up to 750 times their norma... Read More

Swine flu claims 800 lives across India, Ahmedabad prohibits mass gatherings

Killer swine flu attacks India. It’s H1N1, the same strain which was responsible for 1918 Spanish and 2009 flu pandemic that was the deadliest natural disasters in human history. More than 11,000 cases have been reported in India. The death toll has risen to more than 700. Number of death and in... Read More

Rob Knight on TED: How microbes make us who we are

A clear, succinct description of the importance of our microbiome in human health. Includes some interesting data on the chances in the gut microbial flora of a baby from birth to 2 years old. Read More

Burden of Clostridium difficile Infection in the United States

The deadly bacterial infection Clostridium difficile is estimated to have afflicted almost half a million Americans and caused 29,000 deaths in 2011, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published Wednesday in The New England Journal of Medicine. The estimate is... Read More

Gerbils and Silk Road to blame for plague

Most would choose the cuddly gerbil over the much-maligned rat. But the latter's bad reputation may not be fully deserved. Central Asian rodents, not rats, prospering under warm variations in climate, could have been to blame for the arrival of the Black Death in Europe in 1347 and for repeated ... Read More

Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli on blood agar

Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli grown on blood agar. The organism was isolated from smallholdings' cattle, Bangladesh. Read More

2012 Salmonella Illness Linked to Microbiology Class

On May 30, 2012 Brianna Dannen, Public Health Nurse at the Clark County Health District (CCHD), received a call from Bob Williamson at Clark College. Mr. Williamson called to report that a child of a Clark College student enrolled in a microbiology class, BIOL&260, taught by Travis Kibota was i... Read More

Malaria transmission linked to mosquitoes’ sexual biology

Sexual biology may be the key to uncovering why Anopheles mosquitoes are unique in their ability to transmit malaria to humans, according to researchers at Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and University of Perugia, Italy. Through analysis of 16 Anopheles genomes, they found that these... Read More

U.N. experts warn of 'critical knowledge gaps' on Saudi MERS virus

Saudi Arabia has not done enough to investigate and control a deadly new MERS virus that has killed hundreds of people there and remains in many ways a mystery, United Nations health experts said on Monday.

Cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) are surging again, but Saudi health o... Read More

WHO calls for action over Mers virus

Too little is being done to control the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, which has infected 50 people in Saudi Arabia so far this month, the World Health Organization has warned.

The rising number of cases in health-care facilities indicates current infection-control measures are n... Read More

A new understanding of Alzheimer’s

Although natural selection is often thought of as a force that determines the adaptation of replicating organisms to their environment, Harvard researchers have found that selection also occurs at the level of neurons, which are post-mitotic cells, and plays a critical role in the emergence of A... Read More

Modeling and predictive microbiology: Interview with An Vermeulen (Video)

An Vermeulen works at the Laboratory of Food Microbiology and Food Preservation of Ghent University. She is an industrial liaison officer for the laboratory as well as for the Flemish Cluster Predictive Microbiology in Foods, a cooperation between KULeuven and UGent, to improve the knowledge on ... Read More

Salmonella colonies on Xylose Lysine Tergitol-4 agar

Salmonella is a zoonotic foodborne pathogen and a public health concern. It has been estimated that this pathogen causes ~1.2 million illnesses, ~20,000 hospitalizations, and ~400 deaths in the US annually (Scallan et al., 2011). Salmonella has ~2,600 serotypes (serovars) and numerous hosts and ... Read More

Mutant Bacteria That Keep on Growing

The typical Escherichia coli, the laboratory rat of microbiology, is a tiny 1-2 thousandths of a millimeter long. Now, by blocking cell division, two researchers at Concordia University in Montreal have grown E. coli that stretch three quarters of a millimeter. That's up to 750 times their norma... Read More

Too much of a good thing: Extra genes make bacteria lethal

We, as most animals, host many different beneficial bacteria. Being beneficial to the host often pays off for the bacteria, as success of the host determines the survival and spread of the microbe. But if bacteria grow too much they may become deadly. In a new study published in the latest editi... Read More

Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli on EMB agar

Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli grown on EMB agar. The organism was isolated from smallholdings' cattle, Bangladesh. Read More

New Drugs May Come from Microbes in Our Guts

Plants and Microorganisms are the major sources of drugs till date. Most of these "natural products" come from a few genera of soil and marine bacteria that have long been known for their prolific chemistry. The classical process of discovering drugs from microorganisms have two drawbacks- it is... Read More
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